Rochelle senior Oscar Linares will be continuing his academics and his baseball career at Kishwaukee College next year. Linares, who spent three years with the Rochelle Hub baseball program, will study criminal justice in hopes of becoming a crime scene investigator.
“I chose Kishwaukee College because of how close it was to my home,” Linares said. “Kishwaukee College has given me a great opportunity to play JUCO baseball. I’m looking forward to meeting new people, making friends and getting better at what I love to do.”
Linares appeared in 19 games for the Rochelle Hub varsity baseball team this season. The left-handed senior finished second on the team with 27 and one-third innings pitched and 40 strikeouts. Linares recorded two wins on the mound and totaled eight hits including five singles, one double and two home runs. Linares drew a team-high 11 walks and had six RBIs.
“I don’t know if I’ve coached as many kids who love baseball as much as Oscar does,” Rochelle head baseball coach Jarrod Reynolds said. “We’d have a two-and-a-half-hour practice and Oscar would always ask us if we could go longer… He loves baseball and I think he has a ton of potential to be a really good hitter or pitcher. He was a really fun kid to coach and I’d love to have him on our team for another year. He was a lot of fun to have around our team.”
“I only played for coach Reynolds for one year, but I learned a lot on how I can get better,” Linares said. “I could tell how much he loves the game. This offseason, I plan on getting stronger and I want to focus on improving my arm strength in hopes of being able to pitch and play first base. I want to help the Kishwaukee College team as both a hitter and as a pitcher.”